IEC urges South Africans living abroad to register to vote this weekend

  • This weekend is an important for the Electoral Commission as it looks to get more South Africans living abroad to register to vote.
  • There are currently 18 469 South African citizens living in 101 countries already registered.
  • The Electoral Commission has enabled an online registration facility for the first time, making it easier for those living abroad.

2024 is not only a crucial year for the United States in terms of the presidency, but for South Africa too, as the ruling party faces some of its toughest competition to date, along with several societal woes like loadshedding bringing into question whether the ANC should still be in power. It is why as many eligible South Africans as possible should register to vote this year ahead of the 2024 elections.

With that in mind, the Electoral Commission is reminding those citizens living abroad to register to vote too, with this weekend in particular earmarked for a registration drive. At the time of writing, 18 469 South African citizens living in 101 countries are already registered.

To make the process even more streamlined, an online portal has been created.

“The Electoral Commission has enabled an online registration facility for the first time to allow South Africans outside the country to easily register for the 2024 National Elections. In the 2019 elections, about 21 000 South Africans voted abroad, with 7 023 of them being newly registered. The Commission hopes that the introduction of an online registration system will attract the majority of citizens from abroad,” it explained in a press release.

“Citizens living abroad must register as voters either online or in person at their nearest South African mission. South African high commissions, embassies, and consulates will be open during working hours.  Eligible voters are encouraged to check with their nearest mission on the registration dates and times. Registration requires a South African identity document as well as a South African passport,” it added.

This is not the only weekend where those living abroad will be able to register to vote, however, as the Electoral Commission aims to hold several more of these registration drives between now and when the elections take place.

Along with announcing this drive, the Electoral Commission also shared a breakdown of how many citizens in other countries across the globe are registered to vote. Naturally the United Kingdom leads the way with 5 938, but we were surprised to see Australia and New Zealand far lower down than expected.

On the African continent the distribution is as expected as Mauritius leads the way, followed by Lesotho and Namibia.

The full breakdown is as follows:

Rest of the World

  • United Kingdom (5938),
  • The Netherlands (1844),
  • Germany (746),
  • The United States (821),
  • Ireland (675),
  • United Arab Emirates (1068),
  • China (515),
  • Australia (588),
  • New Zealand (314),
  • Cuba (293),
  • Portugal (284),
  • Belgium (280).


  • Mauritius (316),
  • Lesotho (224),
  • Namibia (148),
  • Botswana (170),
  • Zambia (96),
  • Zimbabwe (77),
  • Kenya (73),
  • Ghana (45),
  • Tanzania (40).

[Image – Photo by Glen Carrie on Unsplash]


About Author


Related News